The often recycled tripe about the mystical "Patriot Way" fixing whatever character problems veterans had on other teams seemed pretty dumb this offseason. New England took a chance on Aaron Hernandez as a significant character risk in the 2010 draft, and he is now being held without bail on a first-degree murder charge.
It's foolish to blame the Patriots for whatever role Hernandez might have played in the death of semipro football player Odin Lloyd this summer, just like it's foolish to blame them for cornerback Alfonzo Dennard getting arrested in July on suspicion of DUI and violating his probation. However, it's also foolish to give the team total credit for any previously troubled veteran who hasn't caused a problem in New England.
Cris Collinsworth decided to omit that whole Hernandez ordeal from his mind when he went back to the tired old story of the "Patriot Way" as he praised cornerback Aqib Talib during Sunday night's Patriots-Falcons game.
"All Bill Belichick does is brings them in here, and there hasn't been one ounce of a problem, you know?" Collinsworth said in the fourth quarter of the NBC telecast. "There's something about when they come in, they play for the Patriots, whatever their issues may have been before, they disappear. And they play great football for them, and Aqib Talib at the top of that list."
Yeah Cris, can't think of any problems the Patriots have had.
Belichick isn't a therapist and the Patriots don't run some kind of magical character rehabilitation clinic. Belichick is a great football coach and the Patriots have one heck of an NFL dynasty going on. It's probably best if we leave it at that from now on.